advocacy

Illinois Expands Access to Stock Epinephrine

On August 5, Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner signed a bill that makes several significant improvements to the availability of epinephrine across Illinois.

Public Act 99-0711, the Epinephrine Auto-Injector Act, allows a healthcare practitioner to prescribe epinephrine auto-injectors (EAIs) in the name of an authorized entity where allergens capable of causing anaphylaxis may be present, so long as employees of that entity are appropriately trained. A trained employee may either provide or administer an EAI to a person believed to be experiencing anaphylaxis without concerns of civil liability.

The law also expands the availability of EAIs at schools – which has been allowed in Illinois since 2011 – to include before- and after-school care as well as transit on a school bus.  Further, if a school or school district chooses to obtain EAIs, then it must annually report that information to the State Board of Education.

Lastly, the act creates the Annie LeGere Law, which allows police officers to carry EAIs. The law is named in memory of a 13-year-old Illinois girl who passed away last August due to an allergic reaction to an unknown substance; a police officer who responded to the emergency did not have epinephrine.

FARE has worked for months with the bill sponsors and a broad coalition of supporters across the state, including parents of children with food allergies, adults with food allergies, and physicians from FARE Clinical Network centers of excellence in Illinois. Hundreds of Illinois residents sent letters of support through FARE’s Action Center.

FARE held an awareness day on May 12 in Springfield at which a group of advocates met personally with dozens of legislators and were present to see the bill pass the Illinois Senate. FARE would like to express its deepest appreciation to everyone who called, wrote, and expressed their support!

5 thoughts on “Illinois Expands Access to Stock Epinephrine

    1. I am thrilled to see Illinois passing this law. Unfortunately, I am now seeing families in my district who can not afford the epinephrine auto injectors for their children! Have not seen this happen in 16 yrs of school nursing!! (or 30+ years as a nurse!) Parents having extremely high deductibles through their insurance, and along with the exorbitant cost of the drug, make it difficult or impossible for families to be able to purchase this life saving drug!! There is an assistance program through the drug company that gives a limited savings toward the deductible, but does not cover the full cost! I anticipate I will continue to see this more and more! Allergists in the area are hesitant to prescribe a generic equivalent.
      I am frustrated and concerned for these families. Fortunately I do have school provided epinephrine available, but families would not be able to replace it if I had to use it. School ‘stock’ has always been for unknown allergen anaphylactic symptoms or as the “2nd dose” if needed. Wondering if anyone at FARE can assist??

  1. Thank you, Gov. Rauner for signing this Bill into law in Illinois!!! Having moved to Illinois from another state recently, and being the parents of two children with food allergies, our family was SHOCKED at the complete disregard and apathy with which our local, rural public school district addresses food allergies. They pretty much pretend that the food allergies are not real. We were told by the school principal that they don’t need to follow their own written policies for handling food allergies because, “it’s not that big of a deal.” He said, “we have always done it this way,” and if you don’t like it, maybe your children would be better off elsewhere! We agreed!! We removed our children from the Riverdale Public School District in the Quad Cities and have been homeschooling them ever since. We would love for our children to be able to attend school, but not in an environment that risks their lives daily, and not in an environment with administrators that think it’s perfectly acceptable to be so ignorant and callous about something as serious as food allergies! It’s nice to hear that a positive step toward addressing food allergies was taken in Illinois! We pray for the day that our children will be treated fairly and can re-enter the public school system in a safe, well informed, and caring environment.

  2. Why does this need to be an auto-injector by law? The newest Epi product closest to FDA approval is a pre-filled syringe (PFS) offered by Adamis Pharmaceuticals. Pull the cap, stick it, press the plunger until it auto stops with an audible click. In testing ,this device is actually preferred over auto-injectors due to ease of use and assurance that the drug was delivered. The FDA has requested human factor studies and the company will resubmit in December with possible approval in 1Q17. This will be a cheaper, more effective alternative to EpiPen. We need this device approved ASAP especially in light of the ridiculous price increases in EpiPen.

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